Computing, Libraries, Tennis, India & other interests of Vikas
About Vikas Kamat
Page Last Updated: June 13, 2013
People have branded blogs as a form of "digital exhibitionism"
-- exposing trivial facts about common folk. I am doing my part below.
If you do not know me, first see My Home Page
and then my blog AnthoBLOGy and my resume.
contact me at
20 things About Vikas Kamat
I am very attracted to truth and beauty.
I have a Masters Degree, yet am the least educated in my immediate
family. My dad, mom, wife all have Ph.D.s
Some of the people I admire most are FDR, Gandhi, Shivaram Karanth,
Madame Curie, and Nelson Mandela.
I have met a number of great men and women in my life who have indirectly
influenced me; they include my teachers, social workers, Kannada
writers and poets, and
musicians. I have also been greatly inspired by the innocence of many
common people I came across while growing up in India.
While I admire some of the swamijis
from India, I stay away from them.
I am not a member of any Indian Association. I am repulsed
by their in-fighting, and stay as far away from them as possible.
Indian Classical music is my favorite genre of music. I also like Marathi
Devotional music (Bhakti Sangeet), and medieval compositions. Bhimsen
Joshi, Purandaradasa, Lata Mangeshkar, and Santana are my favorite music makers.
Once a friend from Columbia presented me with a popular Columbian pop CD,
which I liked very much.
I enjoy poetic works of Rabindranth Tagore, Kuvempu,
Da. Ra. Bendre, and William Wordsworth.
I like to read non-fiction literature much more than I like to read
fiction. I have read very less fiction in my life. (See a review of some my
favorite books on India.)
Some of my favorite movies are (or have been): The Godfather
series, Pather Panchali series, Dr. Zhivago, Jurassic Park,
Gandhi. I worship the genius of Satyajit Ray and Steven Spielberg. If there
is one thing I want to do in my life, it is to make movies.
I have been interviewed on Tech
TV, on That's Kannada.com
and on Rediff.com. Many people have a hard time distinguishing my
contributions from my famous parents, and honor/recognize me instead. As a
preference, I enjoy being a private person, and shun publicity. A lot of people
ask me about interracial marriages and interfaith marriages (mine is both),
to which I provide no answers.
I have been blessed with some great friends. Some of my
friendships have lasted multiple decades, because of mutual affection and
respect. I value my friends a lot.
I was exposed to political and religious conflict from a young
age and have thought a lot about separatism, freedom, heroism, and
terrorism. Like my views on interracial marriages, I am not comfortable
discussing it with people whom I don't know well.
Some of the famous people I have met are:
Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Gianni Zail Singh (when he was the President of India), and Atal Bihari
Vajpayee (before he was the Prime Minister of India). I have also met many
writers and musicians from Karnataka.
Although I am not a warm person, people say I have a friendly face. I
even modeled once as a customer-service representative because the selectors
thought my face conveyed a "very warm, friendly, and genuine"
Some of the hobbies I have pursued are: sea shell collecting, stamp
collecting, photography, water colors, oil painting,
home improvement. I not not good at any of them.
I have served many many years as an apprentice in my father's Scientific
Photo Lab and in my family's Cloth Shop. I didn't enjoy the labor
then, but I feel my life is tremendously enriched by the experience of those
I like to cook, but only for parties or a group of people. I don't like to
cook regularly, and I intensely hate eating alone.
I have been mistaken as a Mexican, Puerto-Rican, Spaniard, Greek, and
I don't like to receive or give gifts. I would rather help (or seek help)
with errands at times of need. I also believe in self-made gifts after I
read that the most valuable gift Queen Elizabeth received at her wedding was
a piece of handspun cloth from Gandhi. Once I hand-stitched rugged shopping
bags for my father and joked that they cost me about a thousand dollars (in
terms of how much time it took to make them). One Christmas I
soft-bed for my dog TinTin and cracked the same joke.
I am the type of person who believes in ways of nature. After I saw gay
dogs, I started accepting homosexuality. I was against men hunting for fun
till I saw TinTin hunt down a squirrel, only to show it off to me -- she
had no intention of eating the rodent. I am still looking for animals that
have sex for fun instead of for reproduction. ( Many biologists have
since pointed me to species that have sex for recreation)